Photographer: Tessa Posthuma de Boer voor Faces of Science

Mr S.B. (Sybren) Spit MA

  • Faculty of Humanities
    Capaciteitsgroep Taalwetenschap
  • Visiting address
    P.C. Hoofthuis
    Spuistraat 134  Room number: 4.25
  • Postal address:
    Spuistraat  134
    1012 VB  Amsterdam

PhD Project

In November 2016, I started a PhD Project titled 'Meta-linguistic awarenss in early (second) language acquisition' . This project investigates the common assumpution that children learn their first language entirely implicitly and without any conscious awareness of form and grammar. Although the role of meta-linguistic awareness in adult language acquisition is extensively studied such research is virtually absent in the field of child language acquisition. In this project, I investigate whether children develop any meta-linguistic knowledge when acquiring a language. Using an Esperanto based miniature language, a first study investigates if young monolingual Dutch children show any awareness when acquiring a language. A follow-up study will investigate whether children might even benefit from this kind of awareness when acquiring a language.

This project is under supervision of Enoch Aboh, Sible Andringa and Judith Rispens

Faces of Science

In 2017, I have been chosen as one of the 'Faces of Science' by the KNAW (The Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences). This project aims to inform people about what it means to be a scientist. You can stay up to date here (in Dutch).  

Linguistics Lounge

I am also one of the organisers of the Linguistics Lounge, which is the place where PhD candidates and Research MA students from the ACLC can meet. Each third Thursday of the month at 17.00, there will be an informal lecture by one or two PhD's or rMA students from the ACLC. During and after the lectures there will be drinks. You can find more information on the website and sign up, if you want to receive regular updates about the programme. 



Media appearance

  • Spit, Sybren (13-12-2017): Cliffhangers in de wetenschap [Web] Kennislink. Cliffhangers in de wetenschap.
  • Spit, Sybren (26-10-2017): Lekker leren praten [Web] Kennislink. Lekker leren praten.
  • Spit, Sybren (28-09-2017): Ode aan de juf en meester [Web]. Ode aan de juf en meester.
  • Spit, Sybren (28-08-2017): Transferperikelen [Web]. Transferperikelen.
  • Spit, Sybren (03-07-2017): Mysterieuze taalspelletjes in Game of Thrones [Web] Kennislink. Mysterieuze taalspelletjes in Game of Thrones.
  • Spit, Sybren (01-06-2017): Mauwen en rappen met Ronnie [Web] Kennislink. Mauwen en rappen met Ronnie.


  • Spit, S.B. (organiser) & Andringa, Sible (organiser) (8-12-2017): Awareness in Animal Cognition (organising a conference, workshop, ...).
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  • No ancillary activities

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